Visit UI

Learn about the many reasons the University of Idaho could be a perfect fit for you. Schedule Your Visit

Parent Newsletter

Keep up on campus events and information involving your Vandal student. Sign Up

UI Retirees Association

UIRA has a membership of nearly 500 from every part of the University. Join Today

M.F.A. Creative Writing

The Master of Fine Arts Creative Writing program at the University of Idaho is an intensive, three-year course of study that focuses on the craft of writing. The curriculum provides practical training in fiction, poetry and creative nonfiction, as well as the chance to work with our literary journal: Fugue.

Our program is small by design; graduate workshops are capped at 12 students. While we require applicants to commit to one particular genre, we encourage students to “cross-pollinate” and to push themselves in new directions. Our award-winning faculty members teach workshops, along with a variety of courses aimed at developing craft, technique and situating historical contexts. Our creative writing faculty also offers unique long-form fiction and nonfiction courses. Curriculum and instruction form the core of our program.

We’re located in Moscow, Idaho, a university town located within the beautiful Palouse hills. An independent bookstore, art galleries, an independent movie house, coffee shops and local restaurants fill downtown Moscow. The town is wholly committed to the arts; in fact, many of our readings and special events take place in town. It’s a healthy, friendly and inexpensive place to live.

Graduate Admissions

Apply Now >

How to Apply

The University of Idaho’s MFA in Creative Writing admits students for entry in the fall semester of each year. Application deadline is January 15. Applications incomplete at that time will be at a disadvantage. Candidates should apply in one genre only. We usually notify applicants of their status in early March.

Take note: the application process takes some time to complete. You need to have your official transcripts from all institutions you have attended forwarded to our Graduate Admissions Office. Letters of recommendation can also take a considerable amount of time. Start early.

We advise that you follow the progress of your application on the graduate website.

  • Bachelor's degree from a college or university accredited by a recognized accrediting association.
  • Undergraduate grade‐point average of 3.0 or higher for the last 60 semester credits (or 90 quarter credits) or an undergraduate cumulative grade‐point average of 3.0 or higher.
  • Have maintained at least a 3.0 grade‐point average in subsequent academic work, if any.
  • A TOEFL score (or equivalent English test) of at least 560 (paper test) or 83 (internet test) for non‐English speaking students who have not graduated from an English‐speaking institution.
  • The MFA program does NOT require the GRE.

  1. Graduate Admissions online application.
  2. Three confidential letters of recommendation, preferably from professors who can speak to your aptitude for graduate study and the particular genre to which you are applying. Recommenders should send letters directly to the College of Graduate Studies at the address below. There is no departmental form for recommendations. Letterhead is preferable; if letters do not come directly from the references themselves, recommendations should be signed, by the reference writer, across the envelope flap. If you are seeking a teaching assistantship, letters should also speak of your potential as a teacher of college writing.
  3. Official transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate courses completed at each college or university you have attended.
  4. Statement of Purpose, not more than two double-spaced pages, that discusses your desires and goals. The statement should also explain your interest in the study of creative writing and in the University of Idaho's M.F.A. program in particular.
  5. Curriculum Vitae or resume
  6. Area of Emphasis form to indicate which genre you are applying to.
  7. Writing sample to give us a sense of your creative work; select only one genre:
    • send up to 20 pages of fiction
    • send up to 20 pages of nonfiction
    • send up to 10 pages of poetry
  8. Analytical essay: 8‐20 page essay.

Send Materials To

Graduate Admissions Office
University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 3019
Moscow, ID 83844‐3019

For more information about Graduate Studies, contact:

Bret Shepard, Director of Creative Writing
Department of English
University of Idaho
P.O. Box 441102
Moscow, ID 83844-1102

Phone: (208) 885-6156

M.F.A. Creative Writing

English Department

Physical Address:
200 Brink Hall

Mailing Address:
English Department
University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 1102
Moscow, Idaho 83844-1102

Phone: (208) 885-6156

Fax: (208) 885-5944


Web: English

Directory Map